Financial Planning Software For Advisors Comparison

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Summary Independent Advisor Research Technology Study Participants Independent Advisor Market Adaptation Trends Technology Advisor Demand vs. Existing Tools Market Leaders and Satisfaction with Experimental Software Fast Makers and Disruptors Risk Advisor Demand and New Opportunities for Change, Technology Notices for Change, and Growth Opportunities .

Financial Planning Software For Advisors Comparison

Financial Planning Software For Advisors Comparison

The financial advisor market is a highly fragmented market, with even the largest mega-firms with 10,000-20,000 financial advisors having a single-digit market share, and tens of thousands of advisors operating completely independently as individual advisors. . That means that many instructional technology solutions are incredibly difficult to grow and adopt in the marketplace

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Consultants… one company at a time. This means that it is very difficult to know which technical tools are the “best” and most popular among instructors.

The industry has produced a number of advisory technology studies to address this issue, but most are conducted through open-link surveys, which the vendors themselves distribute to their users, making the surveys objective measures of adoption and satisfaction. So-called Voting Activity Exercise for Sellers. That’s why Research launched its independent Advisor Technology Survey last year, using a more robust sampling methodology to get a clearer picture of what tools are most popular and most preferred by the advisor community.

Overall, the results of the Independent AdvisorTech survey show a remarkably close correlation between the technical advisors most important (and most in demand) and advisor satisfaction with those tools, indicating that the market is indeed remarkably efficient in many categories. In reiterating the software needed to meet the instructor’s needs.

However, recent research also shows that several instructional software categories combined achieve much higher instructor satisfaction than their current adoption reflects, signaling the potential for rapid growth in key categories (including instruction, plan tracking). , dedicated planning tools and customer engagement invoicing and e-signature processes). At the same time, several so-called traditional advisory software categories (including CRM systems, performance reporting, compliance, digital marketing, and especially account aggregation) are particularly vulnerable to disruption from new competitors. In some categories, such as trading and risk/behavioral assessment, advisors are not satisfied with current solutions and are building their own solutions from scratch instead of buying from a disproportionate number of companies.

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As the advisor value proposition increasingly shifts from a focus on product sales and portfolio management to advising as a service for which advisors charge a fee, a gap is emerging in advisory technology to solve advisory problems. himself As leading advisor technology companies look to add (or even acquire) additional features to become more comprehensive systems, advisors are looking for options to implement a best-of-breed approach to fill the unique gaps they experience. business.

Finally, the latest independent advisor technology research shows that the advisor technology market is still incredibly strong, and with over 300 offerings and incumbents on the AdvisorTech Solutions map, they continue to maintain their leadership roles. Advisor technology stack, there is still plenty of opportunity for new companies to grow and capture market share, especially since the advisor business model is constantly changing and evolving!

Michael Buckingham is Head of Planning Strategy at Strategic Wealth, a provider of wealth management services supporting thousands of independent financial advisors.

Financial Planning Software For Advisors Comparison

In addition, he is the co-founder of XY Planning Network, AdvicePay, fpPathfinder and New Planner Recruiting, former Practice Editor of Financial Planning Magazine,

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Podcast and publisher of the popular financial planning industry, Nerd’s Eye View, through his website dedicated to advancing financial planning knowledge. In 2010, Michael received one of the FPA’s Heart of Financial Planning awards for his dedication and service to the advancement of the profession.

Derek Tharp, principal investigator and assistant professor of finance at the University of Southern Maine. In addition to his work on this site, Derek assists clients through his RIA Conscious Capital. Derek is a Certified Financial Planner and holds a Ph.D. in Personal Financial Planning from Kansas State University. He can be reached at [email protected].

Technology plays a critical role in helping financial advisors better serve their clients. From industry-specific tools (e.g., financial planning, portfolio management) to generic tools (e.g., spreadsheets, e-signature solutions), technology is helping advisors become more efficient in serving clients and even expand their value proposition by doing more. Deep for our customers.

There are a number of industry surveys that help advisors inform the technology used in their practice and advisor satisfaction with these technology solutions. However, the main limitation of most industry surveys is that they run on open survey links that anyone can use. Even when trying to verify that the survey takers are actually consultants (which is not always the case), many software companies encourage their (usually the most satisfied) users to participate in open online surveys, and eventually take such surveys. Rather than a genuine tool to understand advisors’ usage and experience with various technology tools, it’s a popularity contest that encourages salespeople to try to fill the ballot box.

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As a result, Research launched an invitation-only survey of tens of thousands of advisors in our community in 2021. We created a unique URL for each person invited to participate in our survey that can only be used once (this prevents sharing consultants or the technology companies they use).

Our survey limits meet software companies trying to fill the ballot box by sharing clever solutions, but due to the nature of our recruitment method, we were able to detect this behavior and eliminate such responses. (Note to tech companies: don’t bother trying this again. You’re wasting your time and your users’ time!)

Due to our more rigorous sampling methodology, we believe the final result – the Independent Advisor Technology Survey – is the most reliable representation of actual adoption and satisfaction trends among independent financial advisors.

Financial Planning Software For Advisors Comparison

Our community may not be representative of the “financial advisor” industry as a whole. Our readers are more advice-oriented (ie, less likely to sell products for commission), confident, slightly younger than the average advisor, and committed enough to continuing education that they choose to consume our service themselves. In-depth, long-form educational content.

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As a result of this background psychology, our sample is significantly more CFP certified and more likely to come from an independent RIA (or hybrid RIA) channel than an independent broker-dealer or insurance company (although our survey sample included many advisors and all of these channels).

We characterize this group of financial advisors as “financial advisors” to reflect this particular subset of advisors focused on providing financial advice (rather than selling financial services products) as their core value proposition.

This lack of representation is certainly not unique to our study (most mentoring studies are biased toward a particular mentor participant base), but we think it is worth being transparent and mindful of the differences in our sample. If you fit the financial advisor description above—especially if you’re in the independent channel, whether an independent broker or RIA—our results are more relevant to you. Given the continued shift of financial advisors from products to advice, we generally believe this sample is a strong indicator of where the broader financial services industry is at.

Given our known biases in our sample, we have taken additional steps to adjust certain metrics to at least account for known differences in our sample relative to the general counselor population.

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In practice, we perform these sample proxy adjustments using channel data on advisor heads provided by Cerulli Associates. For example, according to recent data from Cerulli, there were 123,162 people in the independent industry channel (including independent brokers, independent RIAs and hybrid advisors). Of these, 29.8% were in the independent RIA channel (36,642 advisors), 47.4% in the independent broker-dealer channel (58,419 advisors) and 22.8% in the hybrid channel (28,101 advisors). In our view, we view hybrids primarily as related to broker-dealers, as hybrid advisors are often constrained by the same “home office” forces that influence broker-dealer selection and technology use.

Using these Cerulli channel weights, we plotted our top-line market adoption rates for various software categories. Consequently, while our sample was biased toward independent RIAs (even within the overall independent channel), we believe that our channel adjustments allow us to account for these statistics.

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